My MacBook Pro came with an imbedded iSight camera, but you can
buy external cameras very inexpensively. Apple's external iSight
is only $149.00 at their
Once you have a camera, you need software to record with it.
I downloaded the free
QuickTime Broadcaster from Apple. That's really oriented
toward live broadcasting from your computer, but it has a "Record
to Disk" mode that creates QuickTime movie files.
I'm no expert at video (and no actor either), but as you can
see, this wasn't hard to do:
(If you can't see the embedded movie above, try http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-552421969143473632).
In QuickTime broadcaster, I set the Network Transmission to Manual
Unicast and the IP to 127.0.0.1. Under the Audio tab, I selected my
USB Microphone and set the Gain to 100. I unchecked "Play through
Speaker" to avoid feedback hum. Under Video, I chose the MPEG-4 Video
compressor, set to 12 frames per second and a key frame every 100 frames.
I unchecked the "Limit Data Rate" box. I was now ready to record after
checking the "Record to disk" option.
Click "Broadcast" to start, "Stop" when done. Your movie will be
in your Movies folder and named mymove.mov (mymovie2.mov, etc.).
The sound quality obviously isn't the greatest, and I look
very inanimate. I'm sure you can do a far better job. I did
this in short clips that I then imported into iMovie HD for
final editing. iMovie HD is very easy to use (though I'm sure
someone with more skill could improve this much more than I could).
Conclusion: making movies on your iSight equipped Mac is very easy. Try it!
I later found that I just needed to boost the Input and
Output Volume for the "Line In" under System Preferences, Sound.
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